Monday, October 29, 2007

No pressure

Monkey has been really good. She has waited and waited. She has stopped herself from saying things, and she has renamed her drawings. But last week in the car, after telling me all about how babies like to shake their booties if you give them your fingers to hold on to, and how if we have another baby maybe we will let her give the baby her fingers for support so the baby can dance, she told me she can't wait any more. I know, baby, I know. And then,
"Mama, I think by the time we have a baby, I will be all grown up."
"Probably, since you are so very grown up already."

As Friday dragged on without a word from the clinic, as the weekend wound its brutally elastic way towards what I perceived as a certain phone call first thing Monday morning, and as Monday inched and inched all the way until mid afternoon when the phone call finally came, the debilitating cacophony in my head preventing me from accomplishing anything requiring any real effort kept building, high among the many melodies comprising it the one about how my daughter can't wait any more. She is clearly bored with this "only child" gig. She needs interaction and reflection, she longs for companionship, and soon she will be all grown up.

So you can imagine that when the nurse said that the doctor would like me to repeat the ultrasound in another six weeks, I was not amused. I very nearly lost it, actually. She started with the recommendation, and I had to ask for the result. Which is that Immanuel is still there. Pretty much the same size. Still complex. So nothing is changing, but they want to give the bastard another chance to make himself scarce. This is not what Dr.YoungGun said would happen when we saw him. He said then that appearance on the repeat ultrasound would earn that mofo a one way trip to the OR. Let's just say that I am not doing well with this prospective pushing off of our hypothetical first cycle way into the new year. Maybe even past our one year anniversary. Which I don't think I would handle too well.

The nurse was sympathetic, and seemed to be genuinely concerned. I told her that I am very unhappy about this miscommunication, and she asked whether I thought it would help to come in and talk to the doctor about it. I told her honestly that I didn't think it would help too much to have a fight with the doctor. She very gently suggested that she can put me in touch with their social worker who is very good. I said that I needed things to move and not to talk about how I feel about them not moving. The thing that annoys me the most is that both before, when I was trying to reschedule this ultrasound, and now, she said that I could try a regular GYN to see if they would be willing to do the surgery faster, to accommodate my new job. Well, first, I don't have a GYN, only an OB. Second, this smells suspiciously like encouraging doctor shopping, which I don't think is right. Either you think that I can have the surgery now, in which case you should do it yourself, or you think that I shouldn't have it now, and in that case you don't encourage me to find someone who would be willing to do it anyway. And then there is timing. I didn't bother trying to find anyone like that before now because I thought I would have a whole week to get the surgery in at this place, which seemed very doable. But now it would be a laughably impossible task of looking for someone who would get me in and do the surgery with only nine business days remaining until the start of my new job. Clearly, not happening.

I am much calmer now than I was when I was blindsided by this information earlier today. I think I came up with a compromise that should satisfy both the doctor and us-- I will ask to do the next ultrasound in four weeks rather than six, in time to have the results for our next appointment at the end of November. He'd better be amenable to this.


Nine months ago, on another cold Monday night, my husband played his guitar and my children danced, separated by my skin. I thought that he must be a big baby-- his twists and turns were really starting to hurt. That was the last night of our before, the last time we were all together, the last time that big, important things seemed good. I can't even say that they were good. The pathologist thinks that A was so active that night because he was in pain, suffering the effects of bacterial infection which she later ruled to be a contributory cause of death. I miss him so very much today.


niobe said...

I'm so sad for you and for Monkey.

And why is it so impossible to ever get a straight answer out of a doctor? What's the theory behind waiting? I'm just not getting it.

Phantom Scribbler said...


Beth said...

Oh, Julia. Time helps. Eventually. Sometimes it is the only thing that helps. I am, as ever, so sorry, and can only offer these strange internety {{{hugs}}} You are not alone, I hope it helps, a little, to know that.

My young ones know, in some odd, osmosis sort of way, that there won't be a baby when they are 5 and 8. Perhaps, they tell each other (within my hearing) there will be one when they are 6 and 9. River-Rose tells me, solemnly, "I hope you will have a baby when I am turning nine." And I reply with a hug, and a gentle, "me too, sweetheart."

Zee said...

I'm so sorry, Julia. Delays are annoying and frustrating, and anniversaries of losses (or pre-losses) are desperately hard.

Thank you for the wishes for a better year. I wish the same for you and your family.

slouching mom said...

Oh. This one broke my heart. I'm thinking about you and your sweet Monkey.


Lori said...

Oh poor, sweet Monkey...

My heart breaks for her, and for you. I miss A with you, even though we never met. I'm so sorry he isn't here.

And darn those doctors!! He BETTER think four weeks is a good compromise!!

Mandy said...

I'm new to your blog, familiarizing myself with your story, and sending thoughts of comfort your way.

Already I am saddened by you story, inspired by your hope. I think it speaks volumes to your mothering how expressive your daughter has been about her brother, and I hope there is much happiness on your horizon.

Beruriah said...

Flipping doctors.

I wish I knew of a good answer for Monkey. And I'm sad that today is one nine month anniversary.

Thinking of you.

Aurelia said...

This is so very sad, I'm so sorry.

Explaining why there is no baby to a pre-existing child is probably the hardest thing I've ever had to do. It is the purest hell on earth.

I don't believe A was in pain. I can't. I know the pathologist thinks so, but I prefer to believe that he was responding to the music, and dancing with you all.

As for your cyst, get the doc on the phone and tell him you want an explanation for the wait.

If he has no reason other than he is too busy, or he doesn't bother to call you back, call your OB. I'm sure he has dozens of gyne associates and can get you scheduled in to remove it very very quickly. He knows how important this is, and I'm sure he can help.

(Actually, several OBs I know, do gyne surgery regularly, so he might even be able to get you done himself.)

Anonymous said...

I am sorry you have to wait. I am sorry you have to explain these things to Monkey.

I think the pathologist is full of it. I will be thinking of you tomorrow.

meg said...

The last part that you wrote about the children dancing together, really got me.

I hope things get sorted out in the doctor department, very soon.

Bon said...

oh Julia, i am so sad, and so sorry, and the depiction of A dancing in pain just broke my heart.

oohshiny said...

Hi Julia,
It's Jen again. I haven't said anything for a few months, but I've been stopping by every once in a while. I can't believe it's been 9 months. I managed to lose track, I don't know how. Another sad coincidence is the bacterial infection... that's what put me into preterm labor.
It's too hard sometimes. It seems like no one understands.
Anyway... I just wanted to say I was thinking of you. Every time I check in, I'm hoping the best for you.